Affiliate marketing is has been quite popular for a while now, and many affiliates are working a full-time job until they can fly solo with their business. Whether you’re building micro niche websites or focusing on a single product, having a full-time job comes with challenges.
For one, the amount of time you can spend on your business is limited. You might be able to work on your business during downtime at work, but unless you have explicit permission, it could be a breach of your employment contract.
Despite the obstacles, millions press on, determined to achieve financial freedom through affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing statistics support the hype in favor of both businesses and affiliates. According to MarketingSherpa, even in 2006, when AM was in its infancy, worldwide commission payouts were estimated at $6.5 billion. Today, a business with a developed affiliate marketing program can expect that program to generate between 15-30% of online sales.
If you’re struggling to be an affiliate marketing success story, avoid the following mistakes and watch your productivity (and sales) soar to new heights:
1. Stop giving out your direct affiliate link
Are you giving out your direct affiliate link instead of using a redirect? Aside from masking your affiliate link to make it “look good,” there are bigger reasons you should never publish your direct affiliate link anywhere.
- Your affiliate link might change. It sounds scary, but some companies switch from one affiliate program to another without hiring a programmer to smooth it out. A year after gaining momentum, you could end up with an email letting you know your affiliate link has changed.
Think about all the digital marketing materials you’ve embedded your affiliate link into. PDFs, presentations, lead magnets, guest blog posts, and even your own webpages. You’ll never be able to change them all.
Using a redirect that remains in your control is the only way to maintain control over your affiliate link. If your affiliate link changes, you can swap it out.
- The company might go out of business. When a company goes out of business, your affiliate income will stop. Using a redirect allows you to replace your old product link with a new product link in one place; you won’t need to edit multiple pieces of digital marketing content.
- Your account might get terminated. Nobody expects to have their affiliate accounts terminated, but it happens. You’ll need to find other products to promote, and using a redirect makes the switch easy.
Here’s a detailed guide describing several ways you can create redirects for your affiliate links.
2. Don’t eat, sleep, and breathe affiliate marketing
Building a business requires a commitment to your well-being first and your business second. Working yourself to exhaustion won’t bring results.
Ignoring your well-being is a ticket to burnout, not your next breakthrough. Despite having a full-time job, it’s imperative to create a work-life balance when building your business.
Here are some of the signs of an unbalanced work life.
- You’re skipping meals and self-care. Working around the clock might make you feel like you’re getting more done, but statistics have proven productivity drops during those long hours. If you’re not taking regular breaks to shower, rest, eat, and sleep, you’re pushing yourself toward burnout.
- You obsessively check commissions even while driving. If you can’t wait until you reach your destination to check your commissions, you need to slow down. Distracted driving can cost you your life, or put you in debt for the rest of your life for causing someone else’s death. To illustrate the point, one law firm obtained a settlement of over $2 million for a 17-year old passenger in a car that was struck head on. Other settlements were reached between $500,000 and $2.3 million. Your affiliate commissions won’t cover that.
Obsessively checking your commissions is not going to bring you more sales. If you don’t have time to work on your affiliate business at home, you’re not using your time efficiently. Having a full-time job is no excuse to put yourself and others at risk on the road.
- You’re too tired to spend time with friends and family. Ambition is wonderful, but you’ll never build your whole business in a month by depriving yourself of adequate rest.
Maintaining an unbalanced life creates a domino effect on your health and your business. According to Entrepreneur.com, “Those who are sleep deprived in fact have been shown to be more irritable, forgetful and anxious, and to suffer other mental effects.” They also “lack concentration, coordination and energy throughout the workday.”
If your workload is too heavy, trim it down where possible. Get adequate rest. Above all, stay focused on your goals and pace yourself. As Lao Tzu said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”